If you are using Microsoft Office or Office 365 intensively, chances are that its document cache will get corrupted one day. When that happens, using Office turns into a very frustrating experience, that's filled with error messages and problems like not being able to recover your work in progress. We have encountered this problem ourselves and it took us a bit of time in order to understand how to fix it. To save you the pain of digging through many support forums and dodgy solutions that may or may not work, we have decided to publish this step by step tutorial and help you fix this problem.
Problem Description - The Microsoft Office Document Cache Encountered a Problem
If the Microsoft Office document cache gets corrupted, each time the Microsoft Office Upload Center is started, you are shown an error message that says: "The Microsoft Office Document Cache encountered a problem".
If you click or tap on that error, the Upload Center says that it needs to repair the document cache before it can continue.
If you press Repair, a new error message is shown, stating that: "This action cannot be completed because another application is using the Microsoft Office Document Cache".
When opening a Microsoft document of any type (Word, Excel, Powerpoint), you also get an error message saying: "A problem occurred while accessing the Office Document Cache". If you try to repair the problem, you encounter the issue described earlier.
This happens because the Microsoft Office document cache is corrupted, unusable and unrepairable. The only solution is to delete it and have Microsoft Office create a fresh cache for its documents.
The Solution - Kill the Processes Using the Cache & Delete It
The first step is to close all Microsoft Office applications. There should be no Office document opened.
Then, you need to end all the processes that are using the Microsoft Office document cache. In order to do this, open the Task Manager. If you don't know how, read these tutorials:
- The Basics About the Task Manager: View, Run or End Applications and Processes - if you are using Windows 7.
- 8 Ways to Start the Task Manager - if you are using Windows 8 or 8.1.
In Windows 7, go to the Processes tab while in Windows 8 or 8.1 go to the Details tab.
There you will see all the processes that are currently running. Now you need to find and kill the processes that use the Microsoft Office Document Cache. There's always at least one process running that uses it. The most common process is msosync.exe. Select it and press End Task or right-click on it and press End Task.
Now you need to confirm that you want to end the selected process. Press End process.
On our computers, another process that used the Microsoft Office document cache was csisyn~1.exe. If this process is also running on your computer, kill it.
The easiest way to identify the processes that are using the Microsoft Office document cache is to look into the Description column shown by the Task Manager. If the description of a running process starts with "Microsoft Office Document Cache", then you should end its functioning.
The last step is to delete the corrupted cache, so that Microsoft Office can create another one.
Go to "C:\Users\Your User Name\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Office\15.0\", where Your User Name is the name of the user account that you are currently using. The version number after Office is 15.0 if you are using Office 2013 or Office 365, 14.0 if you are using Office 2010 or 12.0, if you are using Office 2007.
There you will find a subfolder named OfficeFileCache. If you tried to repair the corrupted cache and it didn't work, you will also find other folders named OfficeFileCache.old or OfficeFileCache - 2.old. Delete all these folders that are containing OfficeFileCache in their name. Leave the other folders untouched.
If you restart your computer and you use Microsoft Office again, the problem should be gone and you should no longer encounter the errors mentioned at the beginning of this article.
We hope that you have found this guide useful and that it has helped you solve your problems with the Microsoft Office document cache. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask using the comments form below.